The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Consistent splitting at bottom/of loaf -- Ideas?

neoncoyote's picture

Consistent splitting at bottom/of loaf -- Ideas?

Greetings -

I'm hoping the experts here will give me a few ideas of what to try to prevent splitting at the bottom of my baguettes. I've included a few photos.

Interestingly, this splitting happens only when I use my perforated pans. If I use parchment paper on a stone, there is no splitting. This leads me to conclude that the problem is not my shaping...but I'm open to that being the problem ;) . It seems like with four scores for shorter loaves, and five scores for longer loaves, and those scores resulting in fairly high grigne, that the splitting would NOT be the result of too much tension. I proofed these loaves for about 1 hour and 15 minutes at 68 to 70 degrees and they all passed the poke test.

I certainly appreciate all your thoughts -- thank you!!


linder's picture

It looks like the seam is not completely under the loaf when the baguette is baking.  Sometimes it's difficult to see the seam and ensure it is on the bottom and not twisted.  Another issue might be too much flour on the bench when final shaping that might prevent the seams at the ends from sealing completely.

Hope this helps.


mcs's picture

Your two middle pictures (the ones with the bread positioned horizontally) tell the story.

The one on the top sealed up before it was done expanding, therefore had the biggest blowout on the bottom

The one on the bottom opened up the most on top, therefore had very little blowout on the bottom.

When loaves blowout, they tend to do so on the bottom/side, because during the final proof and during the initial part of the bake, the top and sides get dried out.  The bottom is against the pan or stone, so it is moist and sticky.  As the ovenspring happens, the part that is against the pan or stone rises up a bit, creating a weak spot RIGHT at the bottom edge as it used to be underneath the loaf.

If the top scoring seals up before it finishes ovenspringing, then this is where you'll get your blowout.  It's usually a steaming or heat issue.  The top wasn't kept moist long enough (hence the scoring not opening to its full potential) and/or the placement of the loaves in the oven needs to be more even (they weren't all heated the same) and so they should probably be rotated earlier (left to right or top to bottom).